“Other People in My Church Care About Me:” A Look at Data by Division

Blog August 30, 2023

The church is one body with many members, called from every nation, kindred, tongue, and people. In Christ we are a new creation; distinctions of race, culture, learning, and nationality, and differences between high and low, rich and poor, male and female, must not be divisive among us. We are all equal in Christ, who by one Spirit has bonded us into one fellowship with Him and with one another; we are to serve and be served without partiality or reservation. [1]

One of our greatest blessings as believers is the love and support we are able to draw on from our church family: a word of encouragement when we are feeling low, a meal brought round when we are sick, a kind reminder that God is there for us when we falter. Being fallen beings, however, we often fail to live up to Paul’s urging to “do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers” (Galatians 6:9–10, NIV).

The Office of Archives, Statistics, and Research found that most people who had left the Church did so, not because of doctrinal issues, but because of interpersonal ones, particularly within the church family. About 60% of answers cited factors like “lack of compassion for the hurting,” “not fitting in,” conflict in the congregation,” and “moral failures of members and/or leaders.”[2]

Global Data on Caring for Each Other

The 2017–2018 Global Church Member Survey (2017–18 GCMS) asked Church members whether they felt that other people in their church cared for them. Globally, most Church members (80%) felt that the people in their church cared for them. Less than one in five (15%) were unsure, and less than one in ten (6%) felt that they were uncared for.

When the data was cross-tabulated by Division, it was revealed that the North American Division (NAD) and the Northern Asia-Pacific Division (NSD) had the highest percentage of those who reported that other people in their church cared about them (87%), closely followed by those in the Southern Asia Division (SUD) (86%). The Inter-American Division (IAD) reported the lowest percentage (73%) of members who felt that people in their church cared about them.

Respondents from the IAD also reported the highest percentage (10%) of people who disagreed with the statement, “Other people in my church care about me.” The Euro-Asia Division (ESD) had the lowest percentage (3%) of members who disagreed with the statement, but the highest percentage of those who were unsure (18%).

Praise God that globally, most members (80%) stated they felt like they are cared for by their church family. However, what about the number of members (average 13%) who were not sure whether others cared about them or the number of members who disagreed (average 5%) that others cared about them in their church? We should not forget them but focus on them. Let us have open eyes and hearts so we can see the people attending our churches who are alone and are looking for true relationships and friendships. Let us share the love of Christ in action and build friendships with other members in our local churches. Let us become close and support each other.

We are all one body in Christ; when one of us suffers, we all suffer; when one rejoices, we should all rejoice.

Created in collaboration with the Institute of Church Ministry.
Published by ASTR on 8/30/23.

[1] General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. (2020). 28 fundamental beliefs.


[2] Trim, D. (2019). Building healthy relationships with members and former members. Nurture and

Retention Summit: Discipling, Nurturing, and Reclaiming.